Travel back in time to an ancient Roman school at Butser Ancient Farm!

News provided by Butser Ancient Farm on Wednesday 26th Jul 2023

This summer Butser Ancient Farm in Hampshire are welcoming the Reading Ancient Schoolroom into their Roman Villa, sharing what life would have been like for schoolchildren 2000 years ago!

The experts from the University of Reading’s Ancient Schoolroom Project will be offering a unique immersive experience inside the farm’s recreated Roman Villa from Tuesday 1st August to Monday 7th August. Visitors can have a go writing on wax tablets, discover ancient Latin curses, hear Roman fables and much more.

In these informal, drop in workshops, included in normal admission prices to the farm, families can explore the way ancient children learned, and try their hand at a range of fun and educational activities in the beautiful surroundings of the Roman Villa. There’ll even be a resident Roman witch offering curses to brave visitors, but please do not use these, as they can be dangerous!

Professor Eleanor Dickey FBA, who founded the Ancient Schoolroom project in 2014 and remains its Director said ‘We are very excited to be bringing the Ancient Schoolroom to the Roman Villa at Butser Ancient Farm for the first time this summer. Butser Ancient Farm, as a centre for education, is the perfect location to bring our immersive fun and educational experience to life and share the fascinating way children were taught in the ancient world.’

Rachel Bingham, Creative Developer at Butser Ancient Farm said ‘We’re excited to welcome the team from Reading University to our villa for the week to share more about what life was like as an ancient school child. Our roman villa, complete with mosaic floors and roman furnishings is the perfect setting for an immersive experience into life in the past and we’re looking forward to hearing the sounds of ancient Latin across the farm!’

The school room is based on meticulous research by academics from the University of Reading, who have used original Latin texts and archaeological finds to reconstruct what a Roman school and lessons would have been like. The school is set soon after the Roman conquest of Britain, when the vast majority of schoolchildren were not native Latin speakers. At this time the Roman general Agricola ordered the establishment of Roman schools in order to help win the native nobles over to Roman rule and the schoolroom was an important part of establishing Roman political control over the population.

There will also be the opportunity to purchase some Roman replica items from the school room including papyrus, wax tablets and ink from just £2 to take home with you (cash only)

Butser Ancient Farm is open seven days a week during the summer holidays (up to the 3rd September) and the Ancient Schoolroom runs between the 1st to the 7th August.

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Press release distributed by Pressat on behalf of Butser Ancient Farm, on Wednesday 26 July, 2023. For more information subscribe and follow

Roman School Immersive Family Children's Activity Roman Villa Archaeology Classics Hampshire Charities & non-profits Education & Human Resources Travel & Tourism
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Butser Ancient Farm

Butser Ancient Farm
023 9259 8838
Kristin Devey, Events Coordinator

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